Latest Special issue: Competition Law & Covid-19

Anticompetitive practices

The US DoJ and FTC announce their aim to respond within one week to COVID-19 collaborative proposals submitted following the agencies’ respective processes New
Morgan Lewis (Washington)
The US Federal Trade Commission and the Antitrust Division of the US Department of Justice have announced that they aim to respond within one week to coronavirus (COVID-19) collaborative proposals submitted pursuant to the agencies’ respective processes. In a joint statement issued March 24, (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority takes textbook cartel case to Competition Tribunal for price fixing during the COVID-19 pandemic (T.H. Lee Book Company / Commercial Press / Sino United Publishing / Mr. Hui) New
Hong Kong Competition Commission
The Competition Commission (“Commission”) has today commenced proceedings in the Competition Tribunal (“Tribunal”) against three companies, namely T.H. Lee Book Company Limited, Commercial Press (Hong Kong) Limited and Sino United Publishing (Holdings) Limited (“Companies”); and an individual Mr. (...)

The UK Government and the Competition Authority announce they will formally waive UK competition law for a limited period to allow supermarket retailers to share data with each other on stock levels New
McGuireWoods (London)
All companies are scrambling to respond to the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and in various sectors cooperation between competitors is seen as part of the solution. However, cooperation — or in some cases contact or information exchange — between competitors potentially raises (...)

The UK Competition Authority welcomes the Government’s relaxation of competition law for supermarkets during the COVID-19 outbreak and promises no enforcement action against businesses engaging in cooperation to supply essential products and services New
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
COVID-19: CMA approach to essential business cooperation* The CMA is very conscious of concerns that competition law enforcement could impede necessary cooperation between businesses to deal with the current crisis and ensure security of supplies of essential products and services, such as (...)

The UK Government announces measures to allow supermarkets to work together to feed the nation during the COVID-19 outbreak New
Morgan Lewis (London)
The UK government announced on March 19 that as part of a package of measures to allow supermarkets to work together to feed the nation during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, elements of competition law will be temporarily relaxed for the food sector. Authorities, however, stressed that (...)

The EU Commission vets public statements of Eurocommerce for the non-food retailers to take measures against the major crisis due to COVID-19 New
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
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Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
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Hogan Lovells (Milan)
In the world of COVID-19, companies must not quarantine competition law compliance. Competition law will not be at the top of companies’ agendas today. COVID-19 presents companies with many challenges. Companies will be looking for whatever solutions they can find to deal with this crisis. But (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority warns all market participants that it will continue to stay vigilant against anticompetitive practices that exploit the special situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic New
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC assures vigilance of anticompetitive practices that exploit current situation* In times of great collective effort, the AdC wishes to assure that it remains particularly vigilant in its mission. This includes the detection of possible anticompetitive practices that exploit the current (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Authority declares that companies’ liability will not decrease during the COVID-19 crisis New
Luxembourg Competition Council (Liège)
Coronavirus: the liability of undertakings does not decrease* As the administrative authority responsible for the proper functioning of markets, the Competition Council wants to ensure that companies do not abuse the current situation to the detriment of consumers or their competitors. (...)

The US DOJ and FTC publish a statement on the violation of antitrust laws in connection with the manufacturing, distribution, or sale of public health products during the COVID-19 situation
Sheppard Mullin (Washington)
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Sheppard Mullin (San Francisco)
DOJ and FTC To Focus On Antitrust and Consumer Protection Violations Relating to Coronavirus* The rapidly evolving COVID-19 (coronavirus) situation is impacting local and global companies, disrupting supply chains, creating volatility in the stock market, and causing great concern in local (...)

The US DOJ warns businesses against price fixing, bid rigging, and market sharing in the manufacturing, distribution, and sale of public health products in the face of COVID-19 outbreak New
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Justice Department Cautions Business Community Against Violating Antitrust Laws in the Manufacturing, Distribution, and Sale of Public Health Products* The Department of Justice today announced its intention to hold accountable anyone who violates the antitrust laws of the United States in (...)

The California, New York and Washington Attorneys General announce their intent to take action against unfair "price gouging" and the US DOJ focuses on public health products during the COVID-19 situation New
Paul Weiss (New York)
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Paul Weiss (New York)
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Paul Weiss (Washington)
State AGs Respond to COVID-19-Related “Price Gouging” and DOJ Antitrust Enforcement to Focus on Public Health Products* The outbreak and continued spread of a new strain of coronavirus, COVID-19, has led to surging demand for, and in some cases shortages in the supply of, a wide variety of (...)

The US Washington State Attorney General announces a price gouging investigation in the wake of COVID-19 public health emergency New
Office of the Attorney General - Washington State
AG FERGUSON STATEMENT ON PRICE GOUGING IN PUBLIC-HEALTH EMERGENCY* SEATTLE — Attorney General Bob Ferguson offers the following statement: “My office is investigating price gouging in the wake of the COVID-19 public health emergency. We do not identify the targets of our investigations, but we (...)

Unilateral Practices

The Turkish Competition Authority announces zero tolerance policy against excessive price increases in the food sector during the COVID-19 outbreak New
ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law
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ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law
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ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law
The world is clearly going through uncertain times as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. In Turkey, although at the moment there are significantly fewer confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Turkey as compared to the Western European countries and the UK, the COVID-19 pandemic outbrea k has also (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority reminds businesses to maintain compliance during the COVID-19 outbreak, including dominant companies avoiding excessive prices and all companies avoiding price fixing New
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM’s oversight during the Coronavirus crisis* The current Coronavirus outbreak has far-reaching effects on people and businesses. These are extraordinary times. ACM is closely monitoring economic developments, and is ready to answer any questions about collaborations that companies wish to (...)

The Ukrainian Competition Authority issues recommendations to pharmacies and retailers against excessive prices for masks, examines price hikes for airline tickets, and monitors prices for disinfectants and consumption basket products New
Redcliffe Partners (Kyiv)
As with other competition authorities, the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine (the "AMC") is responding promptly during the coronavirus outbreak. On 13 March 2020, the AMC announced that it would investigate any unjustified price hikes for medicines, face masks and other personal health (...)

The Italian Competition Authority investigates online sales platforms for excessive pricing of hand sanitizers and respiratory protection masks in the face of COVID-19 outbreak in the country New
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
ICA: Coronavirus, the Authority intervenes in the sale of sanitizing products and masks* Today the Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato (the Italian Antitrust Authority) sent a request for information to the main online sales platforms and other sales sites about the marketing of (...)

Mergers

The Portuguese Competition Authority fines a hospital for gun jumping but accepts payment of fine in multiple installments not to negatively affect the hospital’s operations during the COVID-19 pandemic New
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC fines Hospital Particular do Algarve for gun-jumping* The AdC fined Hospital Particular do Algarve, SA (HPA) in the total amount of 155,000 euros for acquiring sole control of Hospital de S. Gonçalo de Lagos S.A. (HSGL) without prior notification of the acquisition and, consequently, (...)

The French Competition Authority encourages delay of new mergers, requires electronic submission, and extends processing times as special measures due to COVID-19 New
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Adaptation of merger control procedures due to Coronavirus COVID-19* Given the health situation in France, the Autorité de la concurrence is forced to put in place extensive preventive measures. The services of the Autorité are working remotely since 17 March 2020. Time limits for processing (...)

The Danish Competition Authority suspends its time limits for merger review for 14 days as special measure due to COVID-19 New
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Time limits for merger control are suspended for 14 days* The Minister of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs has issued an order implying that the time limits for merger control are suspended for 14 days. When companies wish to implement a larger merger, the Competition and Consumer (...)

The Irish Competition Authority encourages delay of merger filings and establishes a temporary process for electronic notification of mergers as special measures due to COVID-19 New
McCann FitzGerald (Dublin)
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McCann FitzGerald (Brussels)
On 18 March, the CCPC issued a statement encouraging merging parties where possible to delay merger filings until further notice, and establishing a temporary process for electronic notification of mergers. In an effort to ensure business continuity in merger review amid the COVID-19 outbreak, (...)

The Brazilian Competition Authority implements measures in line with WHO recommendations against the spread of the COVID-19 New
Mattos Filho Advogados (Sao Paulo)
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Mattos Filho, Veiga Filho, Marrey Jr. & Quiroga (Sao Paulo)
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Mattos Filho Veiga Filho Marrey Jr & Quiroga (New York)
The Brazilian antitrust authority has implemented measures in line with WHO recommendations against the spread of the COVID-19, and activities are being carried out without major impacts, although deadlines in conduct cases are now suspended and delays in certain matters cannot be altogether (...)

The Irish Competition Authority announces temporary changes to the merger notification process due to the COVID-19 outbreak New
Matheson (Dublin)
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Matheson (Dublin)
In light of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the Irish Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (“CCPC”) announced on 18 March 2020 temporary measures to assist it in complying with binding statutory deadlines and to ensure business continuity in the review of notified mergers and (...)

The French Competition Authority is not able to guarantee the usual processing delays for mergers since its staff is working remotely during the COVID-19 situation New
Baker Mckenzie (Paris)
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Baker Mckenzie (Paris)
The French government has taken preventive measures due to COVID-19, thereby forcing the members of the French Competition Authority to work remotely since 17 March 2020. This situation is already impacting on merger control: “Although we are striving to ensure continuity of public service, (…) (...)

The Spanish Government updates foreign investment screening regime in light of COVID-19 and prohibits or severely limits foreign acquisition of companies active in sectors related to public order, public security or public health New
Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
The rapid spread of Covid-19 has led to its consideration as a global pandemic. Spain, currently at the epicenter of the crisis, has declared the state of alarm last Sunday. To ease the effects of the Covid-19 crisis in the economy, the Spanish Government approved yesterday Royal Decree-Law (...)

The US Premerger Notification Office implements a temporary e-filing system for submission of HSR filings New
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
As a result of developments relating to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, the Premerger Notification Office (PNO) of the Federal Trade Commission has announced that it will implement a temporary e-filing system for Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) filings. During this period, all HSR filings must be (...)

The US DOJ extends its timing of merger investigations by 30 days and allows electronic filing of Hart-Scott-Rodino submissions among special measures due to COVID-19 New
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Justice Department Announces Antitrust Civil Process Changes for Pendency of COVID-19 Event* Process Changes Will Ensure that the Department Can Carry Out Its Enforcement Mission While Protecting the Health and Safety of Its Employees and the American Public The Department of Justice (...)

The EU Commission encourages delay of merger notifications and electronic submission as special measures due to COVID-19 New
DG COMP (Brussels)
SPECIAL MEASURES DUE TO CORONAVIRUS / COVID-19* DELAY OF MERGER NOTIFICATIONS DG COMP has put in place a number of measures to ensure business continuity in the enforcement of the EU Merger Regulation. However, due to the complexities and disruptions caused by the Coronavirus, companies are (...)

The EU Commission updates its practical guidance to merging parties and encourages companies to delay merger notifications until further notice due to the COVID-19 outbreak New
O’Melveny & Myers (Hong Kong)
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O’Melveny & Myers (Washington DC)
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O’Melveny & Myers (Brussels)
The European Commission (the “EC”) has updated its practical guidance to merging parties “encouraging companies to delay merger notifications originally planned until further notice, where possible.” The unprecedented move comes in response to the expanding crisis management measures that (...)

The US DoJ announces antitrust civil process changes for pendency of COVID-19 events and confirms that the HSR review process will be significantly impacted New
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
With COVID-19-related closures rolling in daily, you may have questions about the operating status of the federal government’s antitrust enforcement agencies. Currently, the HSR review process does not seem to be significantly impacted, although the agencies will not grant a request for early (...)

The US DoJ and FTC implement policies in response to COVID-19 including new measures to the HSR e-filing system New
White & Case (London)
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White & Case (Washington)
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White & Case (Washington)
Last week, in response to the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the antitrust agencies in the United States and European Union issued policies that will affect, and may delay, merger filings and reviews. On March 13, 2020, the US Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and Federal Trade (...)

The EU Commission encourages companies to delay merger notifications originally planned until further notice where possible due to COVID-19 New
White & Case (Brussels)
COVID-19 is changing our lives more rapidly and more profoundly than we could have ever imagined. All over the world, governments order their countries into lockdowns, factories stop producing, people stop buying, citizens are confined to their four walls and businesses switch to working (...)

The US FTC Premerger Notification Office temporarily institutes mandatory e-filing system as special measure due to COVID-19 New
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
Premerger Notification Office Implements Temporary e-Filing System* Due to the developing COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, and consistent with guidance from the Office of Personnel Management, the Premerger Notification Office (PNO) will implement a temporary e-filing system. During this (...)

The US FTC and EU Commission struggle to balance the need for business and the practical challenges for mergers during the COVID-19 outbreak New
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Brussels)
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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Brussels)
COVID-19 is impacting all sectors of the economy and society, and merger review is no exception. Competition authorities are struggling to balance the need for business continuity and compliance with administrative deadlines on the one hand, with a variety of practical challenges on the other. (...)

The Chinese Competition Authority publishes a formal statement revised procedures for merger filings during the COVID-19 crisis New
O’Melveny & Myers (Brussels)
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O’Melveny & Myers (Washington DC)
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O’Melveny & Myers (Hong Kong)
These moves follow similar actions by the State Administration for Market Regulation (“SAMR”), China’s antitrust authority. On February 6, SAMR issued a formal statement laying out revised procedures for merger filings, prohibiting face-to-face meetings and requiring parties to submit pre-merger (...)

State Aid

The EU Commission finds Luxembourg’s €300 million scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak to be in line with EU State aid rules New
DG COMP (Brussels)
The European Commission has found Luxembourg’s €300 million scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak to be in line with EU State aid rules. The scheme was approved under the State aid Temporary Framework to support the economy in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak (...)

The EU Commission finds Latvian loan guarantee scheme and subsidised loan scheme of €250 million for companies affected by coronavirus outbreak to be in line with EU State aid rules New
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves state support for €250 million Latvian subsidised loan scheme and loan guarantee scheme for companies affected by coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has found Latvian loan guarantee scheme and subsidised loan scheme for companies affected by coronavirus (...)

The EU Commission approves €3 billion Portuguese State aid schemes for small and medium-sized companies and midcaps affected by the COVID-19 outbreak New
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €3 billion Portuguese guarantee schemes for SMEs and midcaps affected by Coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has found four Portuguese guarantee schemes for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and midcaps affected by the Coronavirus outbreak to be (...)

The EU Commission approves a €50 million Italian State aid scheme to support the production and supply of medical devices New
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €50 million Italian support scheme for production and supply of medical equipment and masks during Coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved a €50 million Italian aid scheme to support the production and supply of medical devices, such as (...)

The EU Commission approves a €130 million State aid scheme to help the Danish small and medium-sized enterprises affected by the COVID-19 outbreak New
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves Danish guarantee scheme for SMEs affected by Coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has found a DKK 1 billion (approx. €130 million) Danish guarantee scheme for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) affected by Coronavirus outbreak to be in line with EU (...)

The EU Commission approves three French State aid schemes in order to support the economy in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak New
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves French schemes to support economy in Coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved three French State aid schemes to support the French economy in the context of the Coronavirus outbreak. The schemes were approved under the State aid Temporary (...)

The EU Commission implements a specific and temporary framework for State aid measures to support the EU economy during the COVID-19 outbreak New
BCTG Avocats (Paris)
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BCTG Avocats (Paris)
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BCTG Avocats (Paris)
The current health crisis related to the Covid-19 outbreak has forced several Member States of the European Union (hereinafter the “EU”) to take exceptional containment measures of their population which have resulted in a decrease in the companies’ cash flow and in a freeze on their investments. (...)

The EU Commission adopts a Temporary Framework to support the economy in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak New
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Rome)
On March 19, the Commission adopted a communication (the “Temporary Framework”) setting out a temporary framework for the implementation of less stringent State aid rules in order to support the economy in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak. Given the limited size of the EU budget, most of the (...)

The EU Commissioner Vestager announces a draft proposal for a State aid Temporary Framework to support the economy in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak New
Shearman & Sterling (London)
Member States of the EU and the U.K. are announcing massive support packages for companies affected by the coronavirus crisis. These interventions are on a vast scale. Unlike the 2008 financial crisis, the measures we are seeing this week are predominately fiscal rather than monetary policy (...)

The EU Commission encourages delay of merger notifications and electronic submission as special measures due to COVID-19 New
Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
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Bird & Bird (Brussels)
The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been declared an exceptional occurrence, paving the way for more and faster approval of national State aid initiatives in the EU. The massive and unprecedented financial impact on the world economy has led to a number of European governments promising (...)

The EU Commission issues a communication recalling the various options for Member States that are within the rules and adopts a Temporary Framework for support measures to help with the effects of COVID-19 in order to prevent unfair distortions of competition and trade within the EU’s internal market New
WilmerHale (Frankfurt)
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WilmerHale (Brussels)
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WilmerHale (Brussels)
The COVID-19 crisis is first and foremost a health issue, as governments around the world seek to limit and treat its effects and save lives. However, it is also an immediate economic and social issue, as companies and individuals strive to deal with its effects on their livelihoods—from (...)

The EU Commission adopts a series of measures implementing a flexible approach for approving urgent aid granted by member states to companies affected by the COVID-19 outbreak New
Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP (Brussels)
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Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP (Brussels)
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Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP (Brussels)
The unique EU State aid control law requires, in principle, prior notification by Member States and approval by the Commission of all State aid. During a time of crisis, like the COVID-19 pandemic, EU law allows for a flexible approach for approving urgent State aid. In this post, we discuss (...)

The EU Commission approves the first COVID-19 related State aid notification submitted by Denmark within 24 hours of the notification to compensate damages caused by cancellations of large public events New
White & Case (Brussels)
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White & Case (Brussels)
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White & Case (Brussels)
As the number of businesses around the EU affected by the COVID-19 outbreak grows, many Member States are considering or have announced substantial supporting packages in an effort to limit the impact of the outbreak on the economy. Across the EU, measures vary, from governmental loans and (...)

The EU Commission approves a COVID-19 related measure aimed at compensating event organisers for losses caused by cancellation New
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Washington)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
Recognizing the serious economic consequences that the COVID-19 crisis may create, on March 12 the Commission approved within 24 hours of notification a COVID-19 related measure in Denmark aimed at compensating event organizers for losses caused by cancellations. Following this initial ad hoc (...)

Procedures

The Mexican Competition Authority clarifies enforcement of the Federal Economic Competition Law during the COVID-19 health emergency New
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE’s position for enforcing the Federal Economic Competition Law in light of the current health emergency* Collaboration agreements between economic agents will not be prosecuted as long as they don’t have the objective of displacing competitors and are necessary, given the present context, (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Authority clarifies implications of the European Competition Network’s joint statement on competition law during the COVID-19 crisis and announces it will prioritize competition cases related to the pandemic New
Luxembourg Competition Council (Liège)
Coronavirus (Covid-19) and the implications for competition law in Luxembourg - joint action of the "European Competition Network (ECN)"* The "European Competition Network (ECN)" issued a joint statement of the European competition authorities for the uniform application of competition law (...)

The EU Competition Network and individual EU Member State publishes statements in response to antitrust enforcement due to the COVID-19 outbreak New
WilmerHale (Brussels)
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WilmerHale (Brussels)
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WilmerHale (Brussels)
The European Competition Network of the 27 EU Member State Antitrust Authorities (the ‘ECN’), several individual EU Member State antitrust authorities, the UK’s antitrust authority and Norway’s government have issued statements in response to antitrust enforcement and COVID-19, focusing on three (...)

The EU Competition Network issues a joint statement on application of competition law during the COVID-19 crisis, including allowing companies cooperation to meet demand, and reminding that excessive pricing will be sanctioned New
European Commission (Brussels)
Antitrust: Joint statement by the European Competition Network (ECN) on application of competition law during the Corona crisis* The ECN is fully aware of the social and economic consequences triggered by the COVID-19 outbreak in the EU/EEA. The different EU/EEA competition instruments have (...)

The UK Competition Authority launches a COVID-19 taskforce to ensure compliance in markets affected by the public health emergency and to advise the Government on competition law matters during the outbreak New
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA launches COVID-19 taskforce* The CMA is today launching a taskforce to tackle negative impacts within its remit of the COVID-19 pandemic. The outbreak of COVID-19 is an unprecedented and rapidly evolving challenge that has prompted many concerns that businesses might exploit the situation (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority suspends most procedures in line with the Government’s Royal Decree declaring state of alert, but keeps open the e-services portal for procedures whose parties can prove that delay is against public interest New
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
CoVid-19- Announcement from the CNMC on the timelines for administrative procedures* "Additional provision 3 of Royal Decree 463/2020 of 14 March, declaring the state of alert to manage the health crisis situation caused by COVID-19, provides for the suspension of periods and timelines for (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Authority switches to working remotely due to the COVID-19 crisis New
Luxembourg Competition Council (Liège)
Coronavirus: Update from the Competition Council* Following government instructions and to ensure the safety of all, our teams switched to telecommuting. Be sure that we have taken all necessary measures to maintain our activities and continue to accompany you, without taking unnecessary (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority switches completely to teleworking due to COVID-19 and invites companies to delay all non-urgent mergers New
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
COVID-19 measures* The offices of the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) are closed until further notice. All staff members are teleworking and the handling of cases will continue. While we strive to ensure the continuity of public service, the containment measures imposed by the Government (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority suspends legal timeframes for most procedures due to COVID-19, except for mergers, public tenders, concessions, and permits New
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
The Board of Commissioners decrees to stop legal terms for some procedures filed before COFECE* This measure does not apply to procedures for the notification of concentrations, the verification of notifications for concentrations that were legally bound to be presented before the Commission, (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority issues letter to the Canadian Bar Association regarding impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on its operations New
Canadian Competition Bureau (Gatineau)
Letter from the Commissioner to the Canadian Bar Association regarding impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic* GATINEAU, March 18, 2020 – Today, the Commissioner of Competition issued an open letter to executive members of the Canadian Bar Association’s Competition Law Section providing information on (...)

The German Competition Authority remains operational amidst COVID-19 outbreak, but asks undertakings to postpone submitting non-urgent cases New
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Communication with the Bundeskartellamt (Coronavirus measures)* The Bundeskartellamt’s operating capacity is currently ensured. We will inform you without delay of any limitations that may arise in the context of the coronavirus pandemic. You can contact us as usual by e-mail, phone, or fax, (...)

The Malaysian Competition Authority temporarily closes its offices following the Government’s Movement Restriction Order due to COVID-19 New
Malaysia Competition Commission (Kuala Lumpur)
NOTICE OF TEMPORARY CLOSURE OF MyCC OFFICE* In light of the current situation regarding the COVID-19 outbreak in Malaysia and the recent Movement Restriction Order announced by the Honorable Prime Minister on the 16th of March 2020; the Malaysia Competition Commission (MyCC) will be closing (...)

The Austrian Competition Authority temporarily suspends most business operations and announces an electronic system for submitting merger notifications as special measures due to COVID-19 New
Austrian Competition Authority (Vienna)
Corona (Covid-19) Update Further measures by the Austrian Federal Competition Authority 16. March 2020* The AFCA is doing its utmost in the current situation to maintain at least limited business operations, taking into account the current circumstances in terms of organisation, human (...)

The World’s Authorities present steps to minimise the impact of COVID-19 on antitrust related issues that businesses may confront in the coming days of the outbreak New
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Washington)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Washington)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Washington)
I. INTRODUCTION The COVID-19 pandemic presents unprecedented issues for businesses and we recognize that antitrust is unlikely to be your most important concern at this time. However, some forethought may mitigate risk of future exposure, and position your business as well as possible in this (...)

Regulatory

The Finnish Competition Authority announces it will not apply the Competition Act to cooperations between undertakings needed to ensure adequate supply of goods to consumers during COVID-19 pandemic New
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
Exceptional circumstances caused by the coronavirus to affect the application of the Finnish Competition Act* The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) will take into account the exceptional circumstances caused by the coronavirus when applying the Competition Act. During (...)

The Icelandic Competition Authority opens an information center as a response to the antitrust challenges posed by the current COVID-19 outbreak New
Icelandic Competition Authority
On account of the COVID-19, consumers and businesses are confronted with unprecedented challenges. In response to these challenges, the Icelandic Competition Authority (ICA) has opened an information center where the following issues are addressed. 1- Exemptions from the ban to cooperate (...)

The New Zealand Government asks the Competition Authority to allow cooperation among businesses necessary to provide grocery products and other essential goods to consumers during the COVID-19 pandemic New
New Zealand Commerce Commission
Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19 The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks. “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to (...)

The Australian Competition Authority allows banks to cooperate on a small business relief package in the face of COVID-19 outbreak New
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Australian Banking Association small business relief package* The ACCC has provided urgent interim authorisation to allow the Australian Banking Association (ABA) and banks to work together to implement a small business relief package. The package will allow for the deferral of principal and (...)

The Norwegian Government grants the transportation sector a 3-month temporary exception from the Competition Act as special measure due to COVID-19 New
Norwegian Competition Authority
Transportation sector is granted temporary exception from the Competition Act* Following the corona epidemic, the Norwegian government has as of today granted the transportation sector a three months temporary exception from the prohibition against anticompetitive agreements and practices in (...)

The South African Ministry of Trade and Industry grants block exemptions to the healthcare sector in an effort to combat the spread of the COVID-19 New
Hogan Lovells (Johannesburg)
Acting swiftly to try to contain the spread of Covid-19 in South Africa, on 15 March 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa declared a National State of Disaster. Now the government has gone further - on 19 March 2020 regulations issued by the Minister of Trade and Industry (the "Regulations") were (...)

The South African Minister of Trade and Industry issues regulations to curb the spread of panic buying and price hikes amidst COVID-19 fears New
Hogan Lovells (Johannesburg)
South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa declared a National State of Disaster on 15 March 2020 in a proactive attempt to curb the spread of COVID-19. In line with this proactive response to the global pandemic, on Thursday 19 March 2020 the Minister of Trade and Industry (the "Minister"), Mr (...)

Public sector

The UK Government issues guidance on using public procurement policy to respond to the COVID-19 emergency situation New
University of Bristol - Law School
EXTREME EMERGENCY PROCUREMENT AND COVID-19 — RE TODAY’S UK GUIDANCE* The UK Government has issued guidance on using public procurement to respond to the COVID-19 emergency earlier today (see PPN 1/20). This follows other EU countries’ introduction of emergency legislation and guidance on the same (...)

The UK Cabinet Office publishes a Procurement Policy note in response to the COVID-19 impact on the supply of goods, services and works to the public sector New
Bird & Bird (London)
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Bird & Bird (London)
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Bird & Bird (London)
Clearly the spread of COVID-19 and the measures imposed by the Government will have a significant impact on the supply of goods, services and works to the public sector. Supplies and services may be required urgently and/or existing procurement processes may be delayed to accommodate issues (...)

The UK Government publishes a Procurement Policy Note which sets out guidelines to contracting authorities on responding to the impact of COVID-19 when carrying out regulated procurement activities New
Ashurst (London)
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Ashurst (London)
Introduction In the light of the global outbreak of Covid-19, contracting authorities will need to procure goods, services and works in truly exceptional circumstances and, potentially, their requirements will be extremely urgent. Therefore, contracting authorities may have legitimate reasons (...)

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